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LC: Speech by S for S in moving the motion to amend the Frontier Closed Area (Amendment) Order 2011

     Following is the speech (English translation) by the Secretary for Security, Mr Ambrose S K Lee, in moving the motion to amend the Frontier Closed Area (Amendment) Order 2011 in the Legislative Council today (February 1):


     I move that the motion, as printed on the Agenda, to amend the Frontier Closed Area (Amendment) Order 2011 (the Amendment Order) be passed by this Council.  

     The current coverage of the Frontier Closed Area (FCA) is specified in the Frontier Closed Area Order pursuant to section 36 of the Public Order Ordinance.  

     We announced in January 2008 the policy decision that the coverage of the FCA would be substantially reduced from about 2,800 hectares to about 400 hectares. In order to implement the reduced coverage of the FCA while maintaining the integrity of the boundary, we need to construct new boundary patrol road and primary boundary fence at certain sections along the Hong Kong SAR's boundary with the Mainland, and a secondary boundary fence along the entire boundary patrol road, from Mai Po in the west to Sha Tau Kok in the east.

     To facilitate early implementation of the reduced FCA coverage, the construction works have been divided into four sections. We will implement the reduction of the FCA by amending the Frontier Closed Area Order in stages to tie in with the completion of the construction works for the four sections.  

     The construction works for the "Mai Po to the Lok Ma Chau Control Point Section" and the "Lin Ma Hang to Sha Tau Kok Section" have been completed. In this regard, we have enacted the Amendment Order to specify the reduced FCA in the two Sections concerned. The Amendment Order will take effect on February 15, 2012. This will, in effect, excise more than 740 hectares of land from the FCA for public access.

     The Subcommittee set up by the Legislative Council has completed its scrutiny of the Amendment Order.  I would like to thank the Chairman of the Subcommittee, the Honourable Lau Kong-wah, and other members of the Subcommittee for their valuable suggestions in the process as well as for giving support to the Administration in the submission of the proposed amendments to the Amendment Order to this Council for approval.

     During the examination process, the Subcommittee noted that Note 1 of the Schedule under the Order explains the system on which the new co-ordinates are based. To ensure that the general public could easily understand the meaning of the co-ordinates, the Subcommittee suggested that Note 1 be placed before the location where the co-ordinates appear.

     We agree to the suggestion of the Subcommittee.  In this regard, we propose to move a motion to amend the Amendment Order by deleting Note 1 and adding a new section 3 to the Schedule, the substance of which being the same as Note 1. Accordingly, Notes 2 to 5 will be renumbered as Notes 1 to 4 in tandem.  

     I hope Members will support the passage of the motion, as printed on the Agenda, to amend the Amendment Order so that the first stage of FCA reduction will be implemented on February 15, 2012 as planned.

     Thank you, President.

Ends/Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Issued at HKT 17:16


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